My Mom doesn’t own a computer. She became so frustrated with the one she had, she threatened to throw it out the window. So, she only gets a glimpse of my blog every now and then when she visits my sister. It does make me sad that the most influential person in my life doesn’t always see what I’m doing here. Today, I’m OK with that.

Each time I give her a ring, she always asks me what I’ve been cooking for the blog. I usually end up explaining how I took something traditional and gave it a healthier twist with unusual ingredients. She’s my biggest fan, but my Mom is a purist through and through. I can almost hear her say…

“You didn’t use bulgur in your tabbouleh? Hmm. You like quinoa? What’s wrong with bulgur?”

I love her dearly.

So, there is nothing wrong with bulgur. Nutritionally, bulgur and quinoa are more similar than you’d think, although quinoa is a better source of minerals, aminos and it’s gluten-free. Changing things up a bit is just in my nature and yes, I do like quinoa. It soaks up the dressing and the flavors of the vegetables and makes this tabbouleh one of my favorites.

I gave my Mom a call today. I mentioned nothing of this crazy quinoa tabbouleh.

Red Quinoa Tabbouleh

1 cup red quinoa, rinsed
1 cup water
1 pint grape tomatoes, diced
1/2 medium red onion, finely diced
1/2 seedless cucumber, finely diced
1/2 red pepper, finely diced
1 bunch fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/2 bunch fresh mint, finely chopped or 2 tablespoons dried mint
juice of one lemon (about 1/4 cup)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

In a medium saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa and the water and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer for about 15 minutes. Set aside to cool while you chop your vegetables.

Combine the vegetables and the quinoa in a large bowl.

In a measuring cup or small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and cumin. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

This Red Quinoa Tabbouleh may be the most delicious tabbouleh recipe I've made! It packs up perfectly for lunch or makes a great side-dish! | @tasteLUVnourish


  • I love red quinoa because it is a bit nuttier and a bit less bitter than white. No matter which quinoa you use, always give it a rinse before using. Rinsing removes saponins that give it that bitter flavor. Once you rinse, you’ll never taste it.
  • I rarely ever use dried herbs. I just prefer fresh because I love the brightness they bring. That said…my family prefers dried mint in this recipe. I think the flavor of the dried mint is a bit milder. Personally, I love the fresh mint best!
  • This salad is so versatile. Use whatever you’ve got in the fridge or in your garden. Just chop finely by hand. It’s a labor of love…but worth it. You’re able to control the dice by hand and you eliminate the chance you’ll end up with a bowl of mush if you use a processor.
  • Serve this as a side dish or pack it up for a great lunch.
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